Media Rights Institute of Azerbaijan Publishes a Media Law Manual

November 2011

On September 24, the Media Rights Institute (MRI) of Azerbaijan published its Media Rights Manual in Baku. More than 130 journalists, lawyers—including those representing journalists prosecuted in relation to their participation in the 2011 opposition protests—and representatives of various news agencies, and local and international non-governmental organizations attended the event.

Rashid Hajili, president of the MRI, welcomed participants to the event, which also featured two panel discussions. Panelists shared their views on issues that face journalists and bloggers in Azerbaijan. They discussed the country’s existing media-related legislation, including the recent criminalization of defamation. Panelists emphasized the need for educating lawyers on media law and freedom of expression.

At the close of the event, the MRI conducted a training that showcased courses it offers under an ABA Rule of Law Initiative-supported, U.S. Department of State-funded media law training program. The program, which is open to experienced and aspiring journalists, bloggers and lawyers, helps media professionals protect themselves and operate effectively within the existing legal system.

To learn more about our work in Azerbaijan, contact the ABA Rule of Law Initiative at